Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to what the minister had to say and I would like to ask him a question.
He went to a NATO meeting. There will be other NATO meetings. I, too, often go to those meetings. One thing we have often heard in this House concerning the mission and the policy of the three Ds is that far too much emphasis is being placed on defence, and not enough on development and diplomacy. However, the minister and his government were quick to embrace the Manley report. That report mentions not only extending the mission, but also sending an additional 1,000 soldiers and pilotless aircraft. It says nothing—or almost nothing—about construction and diplomacy.
Why does the minister continue to pursue a military approach? Why did he not use his presence at the NATO meetings as an opportunity to ask other NATO countries to replace Canada in southern Afghanistan, since that is where we are paying the heaviest price?
The minister failed in his duty. He should have told the NATO countries that we have done our part, that we have lost 79 soldiers, that it has been incredibly costly for us to remain in the south and that it is now time for another country to do its part. But he did not do so and continues to pursue a military approach instead of moving towards a better rotation of everyone who should be working together in Afghanistan.